Quiz: Remember the definition of mal de mer?
1610s, of medicines, from Latin catharticus, from Greek kathartikos "fit for cleansing, purgative," from katharsis "purging, cleansing" (see catharsis). General sense is from 1670s. Related: Cathartical.
cathartic ca·thar·tic (kə-thär'tĭk)
Inducing catharsis; purgative. n.
An agent for purging the bowels, especially a laxative.